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Adarsh scam: Govt defends order to prosecute Chavan

Press Trust of India  |  Mumbai 

Justifying governor's order granting sanction to prosecute MP in the multi-crore scam, the in the state today told the that the step was neither politically motivated nor illegal.

"The Governor has recorded his satisfaction that prima facie there is certainly a nexus established between all the acts of the petitioner (Chavan) while handling files pertaining to Adarsh and the benefits derived by his close relatives in the form of membership in the Adarsh society," the stated in an affidavit.

Chavan has also prima facie been found "to be tainted with criminality" by a two-member judicial commission set up by the government, said the affidavit.

It was filed in response to a by Chavan, who is also a former chief minister, challenging a decision of Governor C Vidyasagar Rao granting sanction to the to prosecute him in the Adarsh case.

Chavan's had termed the governor's order as "arbitrary, illegal and unjust" and passed without "proper application of mind" and with "malafide intentions".

In February last year, Governor Rao had granted sanction to to prosecute Chavan for offences under IPC sections 120 (b)(criminal conspiracy) and 420 (cheating and under various provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

The in its affidavit today denied that the order granting sanction was politically motivated and passed without proper application of mind.

"It is denied that the proposal for sanction is politically motivated. It is denied that the order is biased and premeditated and the result of political motivations and escalations of the government or a part of its strategy to destroy or neutralise the petitioner (Chavan)," the affidavit said.

The affidavit was filed by Somnath Bagul, Joint Secretary of the government's General Administration Department.

It said that the Governor sought advice from the Council of Ministers and after applying his mind to the material found it fit to grant sanction.

It further said that the approached the Governor for the second time seeking sanction as there was additional and fresh material against Chavan.

The CBI relied on a report submitted by the two-member judicial commission set up by the government to inquire into the Adarsh scam.

It said that even the high in an order passed last year for the Adarsh building to be demolished had directed the government to initiate criminal action not only against the concerned bureaucrats but also against the concerned ministers and politicians.

The affidavit was submitted today to a division bench of Justices R V More and Anuja Prabhudessai who posted the for further hearing in June.

The CBI had accused Chavan of approving additional floor space index for in return of two flats for his relatives.

He was also charged with illegally approving, as the then Revenue Minister, allotment of 40 per cent of the flats to civilians.

While the CBI named him as an accused in its FIR, in December 2013 the then Governor K Sankaranarayanan refused permission to it to prosecute Chavan in the scam.

However, in March 2015 the high dismissed a plea by Chavan, who is the sitting Lok Sabha MP from Nanded, seeking deletion of his name from the case, as the Governor had refused to grant sanction.

Following this, the CBI re-approached the governor seeking sanction, which was granted in February 2016.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Thu, April 20 2017. 17:48 IST